Estoril previews and predictions: Carreno Busta vs. Verdasco, Kyrgios vs. Cervantes

Fernando Verdasco will be back in action two days after capturing the Bucharest title, as he is set for a first-round Estoril date with Pablo Carreno Busta. Nick Kyrgios is contesting his opening match against Inigo Cervantes.

(WC) Fernando Verdasco vs. (8) Pablo Carreno Busta

It will be an all-Spanish affair when Carreno Busta and Verdasco go head-to-head for the second time in their careers during first-round action at the BMW Open on Wednesday. Their only previous encounter came two years ago on the clay courts of Bastad, where Verdasco prevailed 7-5, 6-3. The world No. 51, who is ranked just one spot behind Carreno Busta, has to make a quick turnaround after triumphing in Bucharest on Monday. A final against Lucas Pouille, which Verdasco ended up winning 6-3, 6-2, had been rained out on Sunday.
Verdasco is a solid 13-7 for the season, while Carreno Busta registers at a respectable 11-11. The 24-year-old has advanced out of the opening round in five of his last six tournaments, a stretch that includes a runner-up performance in Sao Paulo. Carreno Busta is coming off a less demanding week than his opponent, as he beat Denis Istomin in Barcelona before falling to Philipp Kohlschreiber in the second round. Mainly due to Verdasco’s inevitable fatigue, Carreno Busta should enjoy a slight edge in this one.

Pick: Carreno Busta in 3

Inigo Cervantes vs. (2) Nick Kyrgios

Kyrgios will be playing for the first time since Miami when he takes the court in Munich on Wednesday. The 20-year-old and 20th-ranked Australian is a stellar 14-4 for what has been an abbreviated 2016 campaign because of various physical problems. He is 12-3 in his last 15 matches and two of the three losses were impacted by either injury (vs. Stan Wawrinka in the Dubai semifinals) or illness (vs. Albert Ramos-Vinolas in the Indian Wells second round). Kyrgios, who won his first career ATP title in Marseille, made a run to the Miami semis before succumbing to Kei Nishikori.

Whereas the No. 2 seed earned a bye straight to the last 16, Cervantes opened on Tuesday with a 6-4, 6-1 defeat of fellow Spaniard Daniel Munoz de la Nava. The world No. 58 is 9-11 for the season, including an even 7-7 on clay. He is looking to win back-to-back matches in a main draw for just the second time this year (previously reached the Sao Paulo semifinals). This is a steep step up in competition for Cervantes, whose only real hope is if Kyrgios shows signs of rust due to recent inactivity.

Pick: Kyrgios in 2

3 Comments on Estoril previews and predictions: Carreno Busta vs. Verdasco, Kyrgios vs. Cervantes

  1. Kyrgios and Nando in 2. PCB can get a set though and maybe even the match but I have a feeling Verdasco wins here. I think he will make at least QF. And I think Kyrgios will make the final and has a good shot at the title.

  2. Agree with Ricky about Verdasco and going with PCB in 3. Verdasco could use a rest before Madrid.

    Kyrigos in 2.

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